Shocked & Appalled
Report: Science Reduced in Kan. Elementary Schools
Elementary schools in
Kansas and four
surrounding states have drastically reduced or even eliminated instruction
in science because teachers feel pressured to improve performance in math and
reading, according to a survey conducted by a school superintendent. Kansas
We cannot teach subjects in silos. Math and science are intimately related, to reduce one reduces competency in the other.
George Griffith, superintendent of the Trego school district and a member of a
Kansas committee drawing up new
national science standards, told the Kansas Board of Education on Tuesday that
he surveyed more than 900 elementary teachers in Kansas,
Oklahoma and as part of a doctoral dissertation. Nebraska
His survey found as many as one in five elementary teachers in the states are reporting science grades on student report cards, even though they don't teach the subject or test pupils in it, The Lawrence Journal-World reported. The teachers said pressure to increase performance on reading and math tests prompted them reduce class time for science.
"I identified that a little over 55 percent of our K-6 teachers have decreased science education,"
said. "The average was between 30 minutes to an hour per week that they
have cut it, with the main reason that they want to focus on reading and math
He said some of the pressure was from administrators and some came from the teachers' own beliefs.
"This seems to be an ongoing theme around the country," he said. "It's not just in
The federal No Child Left Behind Law tied federal funding for schools that serve high concentrations of low-income families to student achievement on reading and math tests. All schools were required to meet increasingly higher benchmarks each year for the number of students who scored proficient or better on standardized tests in those two subjects.
Board member Ken Willard, a Hutchinson Republican, said he wanted to know more about teachers who give grades in science without teaching it.
"That is unconscionable. It reflects a lack of integrity and it is not appropriate for
students," he said. Kansas
Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
We’re reducing science education and then weep & cry, and beat our breasts about how low our student are ranked in the subjects of Science, Technology, English and Math.
Shame on us!!!